It was standing room only by the time the 61st and 62nd attendees of the Networking Breakfast arrived Thursday morning (Nov. 19, 2015) at the elegant DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel.
The crowd enjoyed the unique treat of hearing reports from Arcadia City Manager Dominic Lazzaretto and other board members, an a cappella rendition of Music of the Night, a special gift hat, as well as an enlightening presentation by featured guest speaker Laura Wilcox of Achieve S.M.A.R.T. Goals, a tribute to Arcadia Business Icon Arcadia Gardens Retirement Hotel, a three-minute Business Spotlight talk by John Villa of Dance Syndicate Entertainment, and many terrific raffle prizes that sent dozens on to their work day as prize winners. Not to mention, the lively guest hosting of Arcadia Chamber President-elect Vicki Knight of Century Rooter Service and Plumbing.
Of course the DoubleTree ballroom will accommodate much larger groups — there was 245 the previous Saturday night for the Arcadia Chinese Association’s annual dinner gala with dance floor and stage performances — but this more intimate setting was cordoned off specifically for the crowd of the Arcadia Chamber of Commerce’s monthly buffet breakfast program sponsored by Rose Hills Memorial Park & Mortuary, anticipated to range this month from 50-55 attendees.
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But not only were there more regular attendees than anticipated Thursday morning, there was also the bonus of about 10 members of the Chamber Board of Directors who are not regulars at the breakfast. This was the first time the Arcadia Chamber combined an abbreviated regular monthly board meeting — typically on the fourth Thursday of the month — with the breakfast that is on the third Thursday of every month except December.
Other firsts during the program began during the opening self-introductions with an “elevator pitch” when Seth Mittleman of the Chiropractic Health Center used his 30-seconds to walk among the tables donning a Phantom of the Opera half-mask and cape while singing a beautiful stanza from “Music of the Night.” And Special Olympics World Games Host Town Arcadia committee chairman Bruce McCallum made a special presentation to Arcadia Chamber Past President Denise Weaver, who organized all the volunteers for Arcadia’s three-day hosting of 100 athletes – a distinctive hat given by representatives of the Kyrgyz Republic to Bruce to give to Denise.
Achieve S.M.A.R.T. Goals
Featured speaker Laura Wilcox’s presentation was engaging and informative due to her no-nonsense approach to mental toughness while also exuding compassion and understanding for those who had yet to really introspect and confront their own insecurities.
After many years of coaching clients with various needs, such as weight management, business struggles and other health problems like smoking and other various addictions, Laura, a hypnotherapist and coach by trade, realized that what these clients really wanted was to work on their self-confidence, procrastination, fears, time management struggles, stress and much more. So Laura developed the Achieve SMART Goals course to teach people how to break the habits and break through the struggles that were keeping them from achieving their goals and dreams. Achieve SMART Goals is a course that will teach you how to set goals correctly, and achieve them.
“To say I failed is but to recognize an error that will lead to future success,” Laura said, adding, “Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgement of something greater than fear.”
Arcadia Business Icon
Julie and Dave Chirikian accepted an Arcadia Business Icon plaque jointly presented by the Arcadia Chamber — CEO Scott Hettrick — and Arcadia Historical Society officers Carol Libby and Beverly Street, along with a certificate from L.A. County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich. Julie said Arcadia Gardens Retirement Hotel, a senior living facility at 720 W. Camino Real that opened in the 1970s, was one of the first licensed residential care facilities of its kind. She and Dave truly enjoy offering premier & luxurious senior living alternatives within elegant surroundings including generous amenities such as lovely common areas nestled throughout the community, Italian marble & water fountains, and classy restaurant style dining. Call them at (626) 574-8571.
John Villa, owner of Dance Syndicate Entertainment, was last month’s winner of the drawing to present a three-minute pitch about his deejay and emcee business this month. Since then he provided terrific 1960s music for the Arcadia Chamber’s time capsule opening event at the iconic office that drew about 150 attendees. John has enthusiasm and a keen eye for “entertainment at the corporate level.” He also offers outstanding lighting decor, passion for excellence and outstanding ability to adopt any kind of music for any kind of theme. Coupled with his newly-acquired eight-inch monitors that can stream Instagram photos, the sky is the limit for this young man, and we cannot wait to see what he has in store for us in the future.
The winner of the drawing for the Business Spotlight at the next Networking Breakfast at Embassy Suites Arcadia on January 21, 2016 was Jason King of CHOICESS.
Chamber board business
Arcadia Chamber of Commerce President Andrew Gregson of The Executive Factor deftly led the board meeting portion of the agenda, which included a Treasurer’s Report from Gil Stromsoe — the Chamber now holds $110,000 in cash and reserves, and profitability and budget is ahead of last fiscal year; a report of upcoming activities at Santa Anita Park by Pete Siberell; Downtown Arcadia activities by Matt McSweeny of Matt Denny’s Ale House Restaurant, including updates on the revived weekly street on Saturdays; and other reports from board members.
Andrew called on City Manager, Dominic Lazzaretto, who said the City Council voted to remove telephone wires in front of the Rusnak dealership, which is undergoing a $30 million renovation. In conjunction with Rusnak – the city plans on fronting three-fourths of the cost initially with a guaranteed repayment plan by Rusnak to cover the costs over the next four years.
Meanwhile, the City of Arcadia has pre-purchased $2 million dollars worth of water in order to secure enough water for the upcoming seasons. In doing so, the city has also saved $350,000 by pre-purchasing the water now instead of later.
Dominic also announced that the long-in-the-works new City website is now live and active at www.ArcadiaCa.gov. Check it out!
In Scott Hettrick’s CEO Report he noted the web site, Facebook and Twitter pages are each generating thousands of views each month from the dozens of posts by the Chamber about members, and members liking and sharing the posts on their own sites and pages. The Chamber office staff deals with about 600 phone calls each month along with dozens of walk-in visitors each week and hundreds of e-mails.
Raffle Winners and Donors
- Vicki Knight of Century Rooter & Plumbing donated some exquisite pieced of candy which were in turn won by Matthew McSweeney of Matt Denny’s
- Claudia Hubbard of DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel donated several tins of delicious DoubleTree cookies, which were won by Ivan Lai of Cruise Planners, Edward Wong of Arcadia Chinese Association, and Brenda Smith of Pasadena Breast Wellness.
- Linda Colley of Civitan donated a fruitcake which was won by Annette Ousterhout of Jan’s Towing.
- Sue Cook from the Arcadia Performing Arts Foundation donated two tickets to an upcoming performance won by featured speaker Laura Wilcox of Achieve SMART Goals
- Kaitlyn Adams of Massage Envy donated a massage/facial treatment won by Javier Arreola of event venue host DoubleTree.
- Becky Happach of The Be Group donated a lunch and tour of the facilities therein which were accepted by Melinda of the Foothill Credit Union
- Annete Ousterhout of Jan’s Towing donated a T-shirt which was won in the raffle by none other than Frank Yik of Rose Hills
- Foothill Credit Union offered a couple of mugs along with AMC movie tickets won by Stefanie Shook from Two Men and a Truck.
- Patricia Colonello of Mountain Views News offered an free ad in the newspaper won by Michael Lee of Arroyo Insurance.
The next Networking Breakfast will be held at Embassy Suites on January 21st, 2016, with the featured speaker climatologist Bill Patzert. Tickets to the breakfast, which runs from 7:30 a.m. – 9 a.m., are $20 in advance ($25 at the door) and discounted to $15 for Chamber members who pay by the previous Friday ($20 at the door for Chamber members). No charge for those holding a Chamber All Access Pass. Tickets: 626-447-2159 or in the “Shop” area at www.ArcadiaCaChamber.org, or at Chamber office, 388 W. Huntington Drive, Arcadia, during regular business hours.